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Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs): Overview

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Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), also known as sexually transmitted infections (STIs), are typically caused by bacteria or viruses and passed from person to person during sexual contact with the penis, vagina, rectum, or mouth. The symptoms of STDs/STIs vary between individuals, depending on the cause, and many people may not experience symptoms at all. Many STDs/STIs have significant health consequences. Together with other scientists' investigations at the NIH, the NICHD's research focuses on understanding sexual risk-taking behaviors that increase the likelihood of individuals contracting STDs/STIs, on developing more effective educational interventions to prevent STDs/STIs, and on defining the consequences and optimal treatments for STIs, especially in pregnant women. 

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Common Names

  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • STDs
  • Sexually transmitted infections
  • STIs

Medical or Scientific Names

  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Sexually transmitted infections
Last Updated Date: 04/03/2013
Last Reviewed Date: 04/03/2013
Vision National Institutes of Health Home BOND National Institues of Health Home Home Storz Lab: Section on Environmental Gene Regulation Home Machner Lab: Unit on Microbial Pathogenesis Home Division of Intramural Population Health Research Home Bonifacino Lab: Section on Intracellular Protein Trafficking Home Lilly Lab: Section on Gamete Development Home Lippincott-Schwartz Lab: Section on Organelle Biology